If you’ve known me for awhile, you might remember last year when I learned that creeks aren’t just dry gullies filled with rocks and shrubs, they can sometimes have water in them! There has been a drought since long before I was born, so I wasn’t used to seeing water in the wild, and the first time I saw water in the creek next to My Trail, it scared me. I thought the roar was a monster coming to get me and spent that whole run looking over my shoulder. Then the sun came back out and the creek was never scary again. But *this* year, we’ve gotten a lifetime’s worth of rain, and then some. I am SO sick of running in the rain.
This morning, Mom made me go out in the rain again. I wasn’t going to post anything about our run because how much can you say about getting wet over and over again? But after almost 2 miles we came around a corner and saw a big sign at the side of My Trail that said “DETOUR.” I’d never seen a sign there before in my life, so it kind of scared me. Mom kept running. “Are you sure you want to keep going that way?” I asked as I pulled back on the leash, eying the sign apprehensively in case it attacked.
“C’mon. It’ll be fiiiiiiiiiine,” said Mom dismissively.
A couple hundred yards on, there was another very serious looking sign in the middle of the trail that said, “FLOODED.” That sign was flanked by 2 traffic cones that looked like they meant business. Mom ran right between the sign and one of the cones. “I really don’t think this is a good idea!” I said, pulling back on the leash so hard that I knocked over one of the cones.
“Let’s check it out, Oscar. I want to see how high the water is!” said Mom. People are can be entertained by the most boring things! Mom was acting like a flooded bike trail was one of the great wonders of the world: The Great Pyramid, Grand Canyon, Great Wall of China, Northern Lights and the Highway 101 underpass on the Stevens Creek Trail…
I could see all the water flowing in the creek parallel to the trail. It was moving fast and it looked angry. The path sat about 15 feet above it here, but in a minute the trail went under the freeway and dropped at least 14 feet. I had been swimming once, but ever since the ocean picked me up and threw me back on land I didn’t care for swimming much. I had a sneaking suspicion Mom just wanted to take a picture of me in front of the scary water. No thank you.
We turned the corner, and (miracle of miracles!) a gate that I’d never noticed before was shut across the trail. Mom (who I’m sure would jump off Niagra Falls in a barrel if it were in the middle of her intended run) tried to open the gate, but there was a big ol’ chain locking it shut. She could take me no further into danger. We turned back and ran the other way, to where the only dangers (rain-slicked wooden bridges) were to two-legged runners.
-Oscar, who is glad to be alive